Cornwall Council grants permission for Penzance Heliport
The Cornwall Council has granted planning permission for a heliport that will reinstate the air link between Penzance and the Isles of Scilly.
Helicopters will operate from Penzance to the islands of St Mary’s and Tresco, complementing existing routes and playing a vital role in growing the islands’ visitor economy. It is hoped flights will commence in spring 2018.
Cornwall Councillors approved the £2 million scheme, after officers reported the proposal would bring “significant benefits for local businesses and visitors.”
The site off Jelbert Way is adjacent to the site of the former heliport at Eastern Green, where a helicopter service to the islands operated successfully for 48 years until October 2012.
The location has significant benefits in terms of weather resilience, excellent road and rail links, and proximity to local amenities including accommodation, shops and eateries.
“Naturally, we are delighted. Today’s decision marks the start of the project that we believe will bring about a revival for the islands and dramatic improvements for their residents, businesses and visitors.”
Robert Dorrien-Smith, who owns the island of Tresco and is one of the main investors in the project said: “Naturally, we are delighted. Today’s decision marks the start of the project that we believe will bring about a revival for the islands and dramatic improvements for their residents, businesses and visitors.”
Cornwall Council received over 2,600 messages of support for the project – the most it has ever received for a planning application.
“The volume – but also the content – of the public support demonstrates without a doubt the importance of this project to the future of tourism on Scilly, and in Cornwall as a whole. We want to take this opportunity to thank all those who shared often very personal reasons for supporting the reinstatement of this lifeline service,” added Dorrien-Smith.
Derek Thomas, MP for West Cornwall said: “I’m pleased the Council has recognised the opportunity the investment of the heliport presents for West Cornwall and Scilly. We are now seeing significant investment in and around Penzance and the addition of a new helicopter service is further evidence of the confidence people have in the future prospects of West Cornwall.”
Penzance Town Councillor Dick Cliffe added: “This is a strategically important development for the Isles of Scilly and it provides important economic benefits for Penzance. The approval of Penzance Heliport is a shot in the arm for Penzance, and is potentially transformational for the Isles of Scilly.”
The service is expected to launch in spring 2018, operated by Leonardo Helicopters AW139 aircraft into both St Mary’s and Tresco.